Attorneys seek different charge for woman accused of leaving boy in hot car

Sandra Rodriguez-Miramontes

ALBUQUERQUE (KRQE) – The family of a toddler, who died after being locked in a hot car, says they don’t want his aunt, who left him in the car, to go to jail.

Sandra Rodriguez-Miramontes was supposed to take a plea deal to avoid jail time but that didn’t happen. Along with the family, the judge and the district attorney’s office don’t want Rodriguez-Miramontes to go to jail either but they’re having trouble figuring out how to keep that from happening.

Rodriguez-Miramontes is charged with negligent child abuse resulting in death from the August 2012 incident. The minimum sentence for that includes jail time but the family of 2-year-old Gabriel says she didn’t intentionally leave her nephew in the car for hours.

Now, attorneys are trying to come up with a different charge that could keep her out of jail. The suggestion was “contributing to delinquency of a minor.”

Rodriguez-Miramontes’ attorney says the charge fits because she failed to transport the toddler to daycare and then failed to provide supervision for the child but Judge Judith Nakamura just wasn’t comfortable using that statute. She gave the attorneys a few hours to figure out how they can make it work.

The next hearing has not been set but the judge says she could meet as soon as next week if the two side work things out.

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